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Old 9th July 2010   #1
Join Date: July 2005
Posts: 1,784
Default Karen Vermeiren in Vriendin XL

Much to the public's chagrin, the European plus-size industry tends to be even worse than that of the U.S. when it comes to using true plus-size models. The U.K. is especially notorious for restricting itself to faux-plus girls, and Germany is scarcely better.

However, France and the Netherlands have a superior track record of employing genuinely full-figured girls. In fact, Holland may be the continent's most size-positive nation, boasting not just one but two plus-specific publications.

In the past, we've noted the existence of the Dutch magazine Big Is Beautiful, a plus-size fashion magazine that occasionally publishes interesting ads or editorials (although one wishes that it featured more attractive models). But Holland's principal women's magazine, Vriendin, also puts out a bimonthly special "extra" edition for plus-size women called Vriendin XL. And the latest issue of Vriendin XL features a cover appearance, as well as three editorial pages, by size-16 goddess Karen Vermeiren.

Karen looks beautiful on the cover, despite unremarkable styling that is only redeemed by a pretty hair accessory. Note the commendable "Alles Max 44+" tag on the magazine's cover (i.e., "Everything in sizes 14+"). We applaud such size designations, as they tend to remind publications to use only legitimately curvaceous models--size 14 and larger.

Karen's editorial is one of those day-to-evening layouts that fashion magazines are fond of publishing. The first page announces that "The work-week is over . . ." and shows the model departing from her place of business.

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The outfit is an acquired taste, but thanks to its reasonably close fit, as well as Karen's curvy pose, it defines and exhibits her womanly hips. This is a signal example of a phenomenon that one frequently encounters in plus-size fashion, whereby the voluptuous body of a genuinely full-figured goddess endows even a forgettable outfit with some attractiveness, thanks to the manner in which her well-fed curves give it a womanly shape.

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The Dutch language is sufficiently far removed from German to give us problems in translation, but the caption here seems to indicate a trip to the zoo. The giraffe and other stuffed animals in Karen's handbag confirm this hypothesis. The attire is, at any rate, a suggestion for a more casual outing.

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Fans enthuse so much about Karen's sumptuous size-16 figure that they sometimes overlook the fact that she also possesses an extraordinarily beautiful face. Just look at the beauty of her plump visage, with her high cheekbones softened by facial fullness, giving her a well-fed appearance that is utterly irresistible.

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Naturally, of the three looks that Vriendin gave Karen in this editorial, the evening outfit is by far the most attractive. Her dress shows off her full, luscious legs and soft, rounded arms. The caption translates as "Let the party begin!" but who can resist rendering the word "feest" into English as "feast"? The caption then reads: "Let the feast begin!" It is thrilling to think of the latter version of the caption indicating Karen's frame of mind when she is going out--i.e., that of all her evening's activities, the one to which she is most excitedly looking forward is to indulging herself with a lavish feast.

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In a slightly larger scan, one notices that Karen's attire fits snugly around her middle, thus defining her most gorgeous figure feature, her round, full waist, which displays a visible, sensual swell. The accessories, particularly the bracelet, are a nice touch. Karen's pose, interacting with the set elements, is naturalistic and graceful.

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Bravo to Karen Vermeiren for her fine appearance in this editorial, and to Vriendin for featuring such a gorgeous and genuinely full-figured model in its pages.

Incidentally, fans may be interested in knowing that in addition to being represented by Network Models and Ego's Models, Karen is now also on the boards of Visage Models in Austria and ModelBookers in Germany.

(Click editorial pages to view larger.)

- ModelBookers online card

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